Edna Barker (1952-2019), Toronto Small Press Book Fair, June 19, 2010 | Photo by Don McLeod
Wordsmith, editor, sister, friend
Edna died on April 24, 2019 of assisted suicide, ending years struggling with a rare form of dementia that gradually robbed her of her vision, language and cognitive skills, and her ability to ride her beloved bike. Edna was my proofreading boss at Harlequin Books in 1976-77 and my good friend for 43 years. She was one of 26 co-founders of FEAC, now Editors Canada, in 1979, serving as secretary and advocate. She also advocated for Casey House and gay rights. Few realized how many dying friends with AIDs she cared for over the years. She advocated building more bike lanes, public libraries, and small houses, like the 12 that she’d owned and renovated on an editor’s salary. The best was the union hall on Barker Avenue, which she turned into a studio/home, and its backyard, into a big vegetable garden. Continue reading
Today is the 48th anniversary of the death of the heroic Irish patriot Bobby Sands (Irish: Roibeárd Gearóid Ó Seachnasaigh; 9 March 1954 – 5 May 1981) after 66 days on hunger strike at Long Kesh prison. We remember Bobby and his comrades and the blanket men and the women in Armagh. In his solemn memory, we publish a brief collection of quotes, some famous, some less well known.
Filed under Europe, History
Amílcar Cabral (1924-1973)
By TONY SEED
On January 20, 1973, Amílcar Lopes da Costa Cabral, leader of the national liberation movement in Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde in West Africa, was assassinated, just months before Guinea Bissau won its long independence struggle against Portugal.
Guinea-Bissau was once part of the kingdom of Gabu, part of the ancient Mali Empire; parts of this kingdom persisted until the 18th century. Other parts of the territory in the current country were considered by the Portuguese as part of their empire. Portuguese Guinea was known as the Slave Coast, as it was a major area for the exportation of African slaves by Europeans to the western hemisphere.
Filed under Africa, History
On December 17, at the age of 83, ballet icon Raven Wilkinson, the first black woman to sign a contract with a major company, passed away | PEDRO DE LA HOZ
Raven Wilkinson in costume at the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo | historicheroines.org
“The greatest weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed.”
Bantu Stephn Biko, the leader of the Black Consciousness movement, died in Pretoria, South Africa on 12 September 1977. Born on 18 December 1946, he was the first president of the South African Students Organisation (SASO), which he co-founded in 1968 – a year of global protests; the anti-Vietnam war protests, huge civil rights demonstrations and student protests. Continue reading
Filed under Africa, History
Acts of remembrance play an important role for the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist). For us, they bring to the fore the historic contributions the working class and people, their leaders, Communist Parties, heroic personalities and unsung heroes have given rise to. The Party has dedicated a Memorial in Beechwood Cemetery to its founder and leader, Hardial Bains who passed away in 1997, and to all the Party comrades who answered the call of the Party to join its ranks to fight for the New.
The photo above was taken on August 15 as visits to the Memorial began this year. It was taken in the early hours of the day, the sun rising to the east. Continue reading